- Former minister accused of stirring up racial hatred by falsely claiming his rival, Lib Dem candidate Elwyn Watkins, was in league with Muslim extremists
- Pamphlets claimed his opponent supported a Muslim hate campaign which had made death threats against Mr Woolas
- A mock newspaper also claimed that Mr Watkins was funded by a rich sheikh, that he illegally channelled funds through foreign doors and that he spent £160,000 more than the legal limit on his campaign
- It was said that Mr Watkins, ‘a single man who lives alone with his mother’, lied about where he lived and broke his promise to move into the constituency
- Mr Watkins’ photograph was also allegedly ‘doctored’, with him being superimposed on a picture with two police officers in an article suggesting Mr Watkins was paying staff less than the minimum wage
Labour’s former immigration minister attempted to stir up racial hatred and ‘make the white folk angry’ with his opponent in a desperate bid to keep his seat in Parliament, a court heard yesterday.
Phil Woolas is alleged to have orchestrated a dirty tricks campaign during the general election, claiming his rival, Liberal Democrat Elwyn Watkins, was in league with ‘mad Muslim’ extremists to swing the local vote in his favour.
Yesterday High Court judges convened an election court – the first in almost 100 years – to hear explosive claims of how the MP was so fixated on retaining his tightly-fought seat that he devised a ‘s*** or bust’ strategy.